Lucky Brand x Priority
Words by Anna Maria Diaz-Balart, Photography Courtesy of Lucky Brand
Riders Sarah De Brun and Sally Hamilton are featured throughout.
If you love riding, chances are you have shared that love with someone else. Perhaps you’ve gotten a best friend on a bike or coworker involved. There are few things as rewarding as seeing the love of cycling grow in someone else. Some of us take this further, I know I am guilty of organizing ‘bike to work’ trains and a meetup group or two, but what if our love of cycling could be shared on a massive scale and change how we interact with our environment at work? Enter the Lucky Brand LBSpoke project. An incredible partnership between a sturdy fleet of Priority Bicycles, a stylish workplace thats committed to the health and well being of its employees, and Bikes Make Life Better, the organization that facilitates partnerships like this. We love how the LBSpoke program has turned out and is changing how employees at Lucky Brand get around in Downtown LA, one stylish cyclist at a time. Even more than that, we love how this can serve as a model for businesses everywhere. It is hard not to be inspired by what these folks have done.
LBSpoke started in 2015 with eight bicycles. It was a way for Lucky Brand to further its mission to “Look Good, Feel Good, Do Good.” The company already had in place group yoga classes and gym incentives, but the corporate fleet helped them further that goal, while at the same time curbing carbon emissions and providing supplemental transportation in their Downtown LA corporate campus. It probably didn't hurt that Lucky Brand’s CEO, Carlos Alberini, is an avid cyclist himself. Priority Bicycles were an ideal fit for a stylish company looking for a workhorse of a bike. Known for their ultra low maintenance and refined style, the LBSpoke models are clearly at home in this fashionable company. Priority bikes are virtually maintenance free, and often seen as fleets at some of the most chic hotels. Bikes Make Life Better, the catalyst for making things like this happen, enables organizations to enhance their transportation, sustainability and wellness efforts by providing simple, affordable bicycle programs.
Prior to 2015, when Lucky Brand employees needed to get from one side of the workplace to the other they could walk or take a corporate shuttle. Joshua Weiner, Lucky Brand’s Vice President of Merchandising, saw an opportunity to bring in Priority Bicycles and give employees another option. While the fleet only covers about a one mile radius, the net effect of the bikes is visible everywhere. From the individual ones like Eve Waldman, who had stopped her spin routine, but now says “I love riding our bikes to the other building or to grab lunch. I’ve stepped up my game in spin class again!” or the more universal effect of seeing folks who would otherwise never ride zipping back and forth between the building on two wheels.
Lunch, meetings, even just a little time away from a desk and computer screen are all now possible via bicycle. Sarah De Brun is an active LBSpoke user “Personally, I was very excited when the bikes were introduced to our company. Being a city girl, I’m addicted to the energy you get from moving with the city. I love any excuse to get outside and take a walk, so hopping on a bike is even more inviting. I usually take the bike out with a group when we head for a team lunch. The Arts District is ever growing so there’s something new to discover all the time. There are things you notice while riding your bike that you don’t normally see when you’re trapped in your car. All in all, having the bikes handy encourages me to take a lunch outside of the building every now and then, and it’s a fun activity to do with teammates."
Safety of course had been a huge concern going in. Lucky Brand worked hard developing a policy and procedure that ensured the safety of all the employees who’d use the fleet. Bikes Make Life Better guided Lucky Brand through the safety and insurance hurdles. Once in place the program is maintained in-house through a partnership between the Human Resources and Facilities at Lucky Brand with Human Resources overseeing the Policy and Procedure and Facilities overseeing the fleet itself.
While LBSpoke isn't on Strava yet (and as such hasn't kept a detailed accounting of miles and rides) it’s clear that Lucky Brand loves their bikes. It's not hard to spot their stylish riders zooming through the Downtown Arts District, taking a bicycle coffee break or heading to meetings. LBSpoke serves as a powerful model of what bikes can bring to a business. It is a small start, but with careful planning, bikes can be seamlessly integrated into the work day. Sure, safely and maintenance are concerns, but these are all questions that can be addressed though existing channels in most workplaces. Cycling isn't something you need to leave behind, even if you work at a fashion brand. Lucky Brand associates prove every day that you can be incredibly polished and on trend, while still biking at work. Associate Ether Shin puts it best, "I love being able to bike around the Arts District. I bike to work, go on coffee and lunch runs, and it’s such a great way to view the burgeoning neighborhood and discover new spots.”